We had great fun last month delivering a weeklong workshop for young aspiring web designers. We were asked by the Reporters Academy to run the workshop for Young People recruited through the Princes Trust program. 

We ran two strands throughout the week switching between the two as we worked;

a) looking at and delivering a brief for a website
b) learning about web design as we go
We issued USB sticks with a simple program on that replicates a the setup of a server so we can load WordPress right there from the USB. 

Monday, 19 December 2016 14:50

Just trying out an image gallery

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Forgive this post but just trying out an image gallery to see what the results are. 


View the embedded image gallery online at:

Monday, 03 October 2016 08:29

Like Lydia says

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I should not avoid my blog....

I was actually looking for a picture of Lydia for this site and came across this from a couple of years ago. It's a recording from a business webinar from the International Association of Virtual Assistants.

"Lydia Bates of What She Said talks about the basics of business blogging: Where business blogging came from, how it's developing, and most importantly what separates blogging for business from blogging for pleasure.

Lydia also looks at the characteristics of some good business blogs, and the 7 types of business blog you don't want to end up with.

And finally find out why blogging can be so tough when it looks so easy -- and why so many blogs fail."

Some great stuff here - maybe I should listen to her a bit more often. 

Tuesday, 27 September 2016 12:29

Joomla Developer Liverpool

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If you haven't seen it yet then do check out Joomla.com

Joomla have launched a brand new service in collaboration with Siteground that is going to see it going head to head against WordPress.com - For the unfamiliar, WordPress.com is different from the self hosted WordPress.org CMS that you can download to your server and set up. 

Joomla.com is going to allow people to set up websites for free so they can expereince the delights of Joomla in a extremely similar way that people do at the moment with Wordpress.com. 


 If you are starting out in business or just want to start a personal blog then do give Joomla.com a try and let me know how you get on.


 We're really looking forward to Joomla 4

As time has gone by - I just started using Joomla as 2.5 came in and there have been a lot of changes since then.  Most notably is the one touch upgrade system - again in a very similar way to the way that Wordpress has developed. The one touch system will upgrade your version of Joomla as new improvements and security fixes are approved.

The mechanism for updating components has also improved. In times gone by having to upload them via FTP could be a little troubling but now the one system that tells you the administrator what components are out of date and again being able to do that one click upgrade really helps smooth the process for inexperienced users and experienced alike. 

This one system for upgrading components and the insistence of Joomla itself that developers build in the process for using this one click upgrade really helps give admins the ability to upgrade and walk away and concentrate on bigger issues.

So Joomla is definitely heading on the right direction and can be seen from the graph below (the orange segment) it still has a long way to catch up on WordPress but long may she reign. 

 WPA 0010 002

 You can check out the North West Joomla User group here  

Friday, 01 July 2016 12:17

Fabulous famelab

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LJMU Fame Lab 001 A bit of a late post but a post all the same as I came across the images from FameLab.

I'd volunteered my time to be on the judging panel at the Liverpool heat of FAMELab UK, the national science and engineering communications competition.


What’s your narrative?

Setting Goals to determine your digital success.

When on a car journey we know the important thing that matters on any journey, these being we know where we are setting off from and we know where we are heading to. And the same is true with a digital strategy. We know where we are now and we should know where we are heading to and realise when we when we get to our destination.

Strategy – a written document that takes in the broad brush strokes of what it is you as an organisation are doing, the setting of your aims and objectives.

Plan – the detail of the strategy broken down into a line by line response to the strategy. Normally the plan is broken down into sections using the aims as laid out in your strategy.

Tuesday, 15 December 2015 12:10

My Learning curve is up the spout

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Alright don't moan too much about my lack of blogging on here - I have a lot of things to do and a lot of other places to blog but never fear I am still as cynical as ever.

I didn't check the last time I posted but I bet it is months ago - as it should be in some cases. It's OK to let this side of the site slip......  a little. I would really like to be able to get back just posting community media information but alas I keep on being dragged into doing work which i suppose i have to do as it's where the money comes from and I get a kick out of people recognising the skills and wanting me to build a website or some such like. But I promise as I promise every year that next year will be different.......

So this isn't an end of year round up it - it is more of a right well I will try harder to have more fun. 

So what's on the cards. Well there are 4 Ignite Liverpool's lined up for next year right now. And I've just had a chat about doing a one off at Threshold Festival...... but I'm still thinking about that one as it would have to be musc orientated. Maybe a chat with Bernie Connor would help me along....

I've also been talking about the return of Social media Cafe Liverpool, again love the idea but it is quite a bit of work to pull off. I have to send emails and ask people to get involved. produce flyers and posters and edit videos and things. But we'll probably do a couple of those in the spring. Get in touch if you want to get involved. 

With the Binary festival coming up I really want to do something a little larger than an @SMCLIV and focus on practical conversations. Normally you go to Digital conferences and all you get is what is going on on the East Coast of the US. Well, I don't live there I live here. And I want to know what my elected representatives are thinking and doing. I also want to know what those who hold the power are thinking and doing - they are not elected but they get away with nice little events that make them look like good boys and girls while they make our lives hell as we suffer with their infrastructure. You know who I mean. 

So that is 2016 all boxed off then. Looks like a great deal so we will have to see how I get on. 

I should say before I close that I should spend sometime on sorting this site out also. 








I've been in the habit of creating these presentation over the past few years and using them at Jelly Liverpool, Social Media cafe and Ignite Liverpool. This is the latest edition and if some of the event have gone already then at least they will be back around at some point. So feel free to share. 

As I can't get the iframe embed to work at the moment and I'm in a bit of a hurry here is the link to the presentation while I spend my time hopefully more fruitfully working out why the iframe embed isn't working. 



Tuesday, 17 February 2015 10:31

Innovate UK event February at Baltic Creative

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 I was lucky enough to make it down to the Innovate UK event last week at Baltic Creative, the creative hub of Liverpool where loads of app makers, designers and generla web developers have offices. I was there for the Innovate UK event which was a networking session and a series of presentations to help digital sector workers (that's us) to fiind out more about Innovate UK and what they have to offer. I liked what i saw so I thought I would share it as best as I can.

Sunday, 15 February 2015 21:32

Digital Skills Development workshops in Liverpool

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We've been asked many times before "When are you running your next (insert random digital workshop name) workshop?" and the answer has always been soon...... but from circulating our Join the Mailing List link where people can sign up to find out more, well there is clearly a lot of hunger out there for a whole range of digital workshops.

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